What makes your work impactful? Seattle reflections by Liv Peterson Posted on January 25th, 2017 by

Today was filled with three site visits, creativity to the max, and inspirational people. We started the day off with the City of Seattle’s development team and our very own Gustie Alumni Nate Torgelson ‘88 who works on Seattle’s building sustainability efforts. We also had the opportunity to chat with three employees working on arts and culture, economic development, and construction and inspection in Seattle. Listening to this group talk about their roles and their community with passion and energy was very inspiring. Seattle is a thriving technology city that is experiencing growing pains. Some of the issues that have surfaced because of fast pace of growth include the homeless crisis, lack of socioeconomic diversity, and trouble with transportation. It was interesting to hear the transparent panel address these concerns and what is being done to address the issues. We also heard about Seattle’s strengths, which include the Bullitt Center and a strong investment community. The importance of a liberal arts degree also came up in the conversation. One of the speakers said this type of degree is so valuable, because we learn how to learn. This sounds very simple but impactful, because we learn how to adapt, how to be empathetic, and how to collaborate. These are just some of the qualities we heard about over and over again in discussion about how to be successful with a liberal arts degree.

After meeting with the City of Seattle’s development team, the group headed over to Capital Hill where the Bullitt Center is located. We walked up to a tall, modern, glass building that stood ascetically and sustainably different from every building surrounding it. It is the greenest commercial building IN THE WORLD. How encouraging is that?! It made me rethink putting my water bottle in a garbage can and leaving the water running when I brushed my teeth. We climbed floor after floor looking through the huge glass windows as solar panels hovered overhead. I think the most fascinating part were the foam toilets to save water. What a great building to have in Seattle in hopes that it can inspire other cities around the world to work towards a more sustainable life.










Next, we ventured off to an Advertising Agency called Publicis. I had been looking forward to this visit all week. We started off with a tour around their small office and landed in a corner room on the top floor. Cupcakes and popcorn were waiting for us as we entered a room that could only be found in an ad agency. It had two couches, color changing lights, a big flat screen TV, and a game written on the board that included video games and drinking. We met with representatives from HR, recruitment, account, and strategy. The agency takes on some amazing clients such as T-Mobile, American Girl, and Aflac. We heard what inspires them, how they got to where they are today, and how we can be successful in the business. One thing I took away was to find my passion and what makes me happy and then go out and pursue it. Life is too short to hate your job. Be inspired and inspire others, because we all can do great things, from solving the problems of a city to becoming environmentally friendly to creating impactful ad campaigns.


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